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Anyway my Olympus stuff now up for sale if anyone is interested.
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Olympus 4thirds started slowly and soon became a successful seller round the world. Canon and Nikon with their huge global market place out sold every one so yes, in sales figures, they were more successful than Olympus, but Olympus became successful in their own small way and gathered fans of the system world wide. M/4/3 seems to have attracted more attention than 4thirds and I can see a success story in the making, although I think it will be more towards Panasonic than Olympus.
I never liked the 4thirds aspect ratio of 4.2 and much prefer the 3.2 ratio on APS-C cameras which was very close to my old 35-mm slides. Also the OVF on the cheaper 4thirds cameras was not good as it looked like you were looking down a tunnel. I much prefer the EVF on my little G3.
Olympus hinted at the rumoured new 4thirds body may have a EVF borrowed from the OM-D E-M5.
Getting a adaptor for your E-M5 to fit 4thirds lenses is not cheap and some of the larger pro glass really needs a more substantial body for better balance.
Quote: much prefer the 3.2 ratio on APS-C cameras which was very close to my old 35-mm slides
Don't forget that the 4/3 ratio is a great deal more naturally pleasing pictorially than 3/2. Take a look in any gallery and you will rarely see 3/2 - if ever. It only came about by accident because the only film available to Oscar Barnack was 35mm movie stock and that was the size he needed for reasonable quality.
There would be no logic in designing a new system and hampering the available image view by cropping to 3/2 when the lens is giving a circular image on the sensor. 4/3 makes more use of the lens's image circle and of course square, like the Hasselblad would be even more effective.
I always found the square format ideal. You needed to train yourself to see the picture framed in the way you wish (unfortunately, people now are rarely willing to try so hard) but it meant you had no messing with holding the camera in different positions and you always had the full imaging capacity of the lens available.
It's a shame that straight line thinking hampers us so much. Surely it is best to use all the capacity of something and then jettison what you don't want? To an extent, the multi aspect sensor of Panasonic's does this, of course. You can shoot square and crop to your satisfaction in software or crop in camera.
Good point Lemmy and I agree with most of it, but there is always going to be fans and haters of both formats and the advantages and disadvantages of either format is to a point subjective.
Quote: going to be fans and haters of both formats and the advantages and disadvantages of either format is to a point subjective
Yes true. The rational answer is is square format and crop afterwards but it does require experience to foresee what your picture will look like cropped and most folk want a more instant result than that.
One of the interesting results of being a long time pro is that I have used cameras from 5x4 and 9x12 via 6x6x, 6x7, 6x4.5 and 35mm to APS and M3/4. It's just horses fpr courses in the end. The best overall practical format in my view was the Mamiya 6x7 with the swivelling back - for studio and set up work.
I used a 10x8 a couple of times for studio portraiture. Fabulous.
Our department used Pentax 6x6 for studio, field and SOCO work, we rarely used 35-mm. The old 10x8 plate brings back memories, they were a sod to develop, but worth it. I eventually went over to E6 which is what our customers were asking for. I have been using digital since 2001 and I have to be honest and say I got more pleasure and satisfaction from film and I still occasionally give my old Minolta 35-mm man focus camera an outing.
The Panasonic GH-1, GH-2 and now GH-3 have multi aspect ratio sensors as does other Panny cameras. Olympus never gave you the choice in their 4thirds cameras.
I'm really not skilled enough yet to spend hours on the PC cropping. I'm perfectly happy with my Jpegs.
Ps, I have a cheap and cheerful [£400] Yamaha electro acoustic APX-5 and its not bad for the money.
Very playable neck unlike some acoustics I have played. I had a Taylor about 20 years ago but not that impressed.
Quote: The Panasonic GH-1, GH-2 and now GH-3 have multi aspect ratio sensors as does other Panny cameras. Olympus never gave you the choice in their 4thirds cameras.
I don't know about Olympus' Four Thirds cameras, but in Micro Four Thirds, at least in the OM-D E-M5, you have the option to change the aspect ratio from the default (4:3) to 16:9, 3:2 1:1, and 3:4 (Shooting Menu 1 -> Image Aspect). The same may well be true of the PEN range too, but I haven't used one of those so can't comment.
The difference is that the Olympus cameras (and the GH3) just crop the sensor. The GH2 (not sure about GH1) Panasonic has an oversize (multi-aspect) sensor so that when you change aspect ratios, the sensor in not cropped but a different section is used.
The GH3 doesn't have a multi-aspect sensor.
Ah, interesting. I didn't know that. Thanks David.
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